Sports

January 26, 2013

McKinney steps down on diamond

For the second year in a row, Dalton High’s softball team will have a new coach.

Lady Catamounts coach Jeff McKinney, who took over just before the start of the 2012 season after Bobby Brotherton resigned, submitted his letter of resignation to Dalton High athletic director Ron Ward this week.

Brotherton, who was also the school’s baseball coach, resigned in August after he took a position with Whitfield County Schools. McKinney, who also coaches girls basketball — he is in his 13th season leading that program — said he hadn’t even planned on being an assistant coach for this past softball season because his son Jordon would be playing freshman and junior varsity football at Dalton.

“It was so late when the season was about to start, and coach Brotherton hated to leave the girls hanging like that, and I just wanted the girls to have some kind of stability,” McKinney said. “I just didn’t want to miss any of Jordon’s stuff. I missed so much of his middle school games, and my original intent was to be there for his games during high school.”

Ward said he wasn’t surprised with Mc-Kinney’s resignation and was grateful to him for filling the void.

“When Bobby left, that left us with a huge hole to fill, and softball was coming up very quickly,” Ward said. “Jeff was instrumental in stepping in, and it was a great and easy transition for the girls and he did a great job with them. He had been telling me that it would probably be a one-year thing.”

McKinney assisted Brotherton during the 2011 season, which was also the senior year of McKinney’s daughter Chandler. He had submitted his resignation as a softball assistant in preparation for Jordon’s freshman year, but when Brotherton left the program, Ward asked McKinney to step in and lead.

“It was so late and the season was about to start and coach Brotherton wouldn’t have wanted the girls to have to start all over,” McKinney said. “A lot of those girls are like my own girls, and I didn’t want them to suffer. I knew all of the drills that coach Brotherton used, and we kept everything like it was in practice from the last year and changed very little from the previous year.”

McKinney’s team went 15-19 overall but got hot in the postseason. Despite entering the Region 7-4A tournament as the event’s lowest seed, the Lady Cats earned a berth in the Class 4A state playoffs and advanced to the second round before losing 2-1 in a best-of-three series at Columbus. A pair of seniors signed athletic scholarships after the season ended, with Allie Blackwood going to Austin Peay and Carson Hagin going to Alderson-Broaddus University.

One solution to the Lady Cats’ coaching vacancy that may be on some people’s minds isn’t likely to happen. After Brotherton’s departure, Ward brought in former Northwest Whitfield softball coach and baseball assistant Shane Ramsey to take over the Cats’ baseball program, and he’ll lead that team for the first time this spring. However, Ward said Ramsey told him he “isn’t interested” in the softball job.

“He is expecting a new child, and he can’t devote the time to both programs with a new child on the way,” Ward said.

McKinney isn’t the only departure from the softball program.

Text Only
Sports
  • DSCsoccer2.jpg Ready to get started: Roadrunners add Daser as soccer director

    Dalton State College athletic director Derek Waugh called Kerem Daser a good “fit” as the Roadrunners’ new soccer director.

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • CreekFootball.jpg Coahulla Creek enters new era with Barger

    VARNELL — With just two varsity football seasons to its credit and little success in the win column so far, Coahulla Creek High School doesn’t yet have what one would call a proud football history.

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • Rush turning to Gold's

    Dalton is gaining a Gold’s Gym, but losing The Rush Fitness Complex.

    July 30, 2014

  • Dalton State College hires Kerem Daser as soccer director

    Dalton State College athletic director Derek Waugh said Tuesday that Kerem Daser, a veteran soccer coach, is the Roadrunners’ new soccer director.

    July 29, 2014

  • NW vs Cass baseball 6  mlh.jpg Thrown a curveball

    About four weeks ago, Seth Pierce and his family moved closer to Ringgold High School — a move which has big ramifications on two sports fronts. Not only will his departure affect the Northwest Whitfield High School baseball program, the move will also put him back on the football field.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • NW Football3.jpg Prep football: NW Whitfield staying hungry for more success

    Northwest Whitfield High School entered the 2013 season motivated to reach the state playoffs — something the Bruins accomplished.
    This year’s team possesses the hunger to mirror last season’s successes — and possibly more.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • Chris Whitfield: Ending ride (kind of) as sports writer

    T wo weeks ago, I was told by managing editor Jamie Jones that I would no longer be a full-time sports writer with The Daily Citizen. It was a mutual decision.

    July 28, 2014

  • Local trio leads NW section to 3rd place

    Tori Owens, of Chatsworth finished 11-over-par Monday in the Junior Sectional Challenge Match at The Landings Club-Marshwood and Magnolia in Savannah for third place in the girls 12-13-year-old 9-hole division. She joined Landon Painter and Hardin Chambless on the Northwest team.

    July 28, 2014

  • SE fball conditioning 1 mlh.jpg Prep football: Raiders enter preseason hoping for breakthrough

    Entering his third year as Southeast Whitfield High School’s football coach, Sean Gray believes the last obstacle is belief.
    He believes this group of Raiders has that quality.

    July 28, 2014 2 Photos

  • Devin Golden: Other sports start practice this week

    Football isn’t the only high school sport during the fall — and the others are joining in this week.

    July 28, 2014